DOWNFALL 2012 – Tour continues with Otep and ReAktion

DOWNFALL 2012 (photo by Timothy M. Rader)


July 11, 2015 marked the invasion by the band DOWNFALL 2012. Headlining the bill was Otep, supporting bands included ReAktion and Silo. This was one intense show. The power stricken band Silo riled the audience up and left a trail of destruction. Olathia, the new metal band from Cleveland which has strong veteran roots delivered a performance that is still being talked about. Olathia is one of those bands whom you should really check out and give them a chance to soak into your soul. ReAktion did not leave the stage without everyone knowing who the hell they were. A great international touring band that has the opportunity to be a headliner. Their music is infectious and will having you singing along with them along with destroying the venue you are at.

(photo by Timothy M. Rader)
(photo by Timothy M. Rader)

Downfall 2012 is one of those bands that you know that when you go to check them out they will no doubt get the blood pumping. Severe and intense driven these guys suck you into them. Such a great band with so much potential and opportunity to get to the next level. Armed with a powerful frontman and precise performers this band set out to annihilate the Cleveland Agora and that they indeed do. A 5 star performance from a band that everyone should know about or at least have on their radar.

(photo by Timothy M. Rader)

Should DOWNFALL 2012 hit your town please make time to check this band out as they will definitely slide into your should they be hitting your town.

MOTHERSHIP invades Cleveland

July 21st marked the return of the rockin’ band MOTHERSHIP. This show was indeed a powerfest which also included on the bill Detroit’s “Wilson” and PA’s bad asses “CROBOT”.

Bishop of Crobot joins Mothership on stage

Mothership’s music was severely infectious and the straight up hard rock anthemic music swooshed the audience and fans which were intensely feeling the music. Song after song the band delivered knock out blows. If you are not familiar with Mothership, the music can sort of be described as a modern 70’s guitar driven hard rock band. Fronted by Kyle Juett the bass player he really was able to bring the audience along with them for the ride that night. During one point of the show Chris Bishop from Crobot joined the guys for a sweet rockin song filled with insane solos.

MOTHERSHIP: official | fb | twitter | youtube

Shreddin across the USA this summer with the @crobotband and @wilsonparties bros. More tour dates and info coming soon. Gonna be wild! Join us

Upcoming Tour Dates

7/26 – Columbus, OH
7/28 – Joplin, MO
7/31 – Ringle, WI
8/1 – Fridley, MN
8/7 – Lincoln, NE
8/9 – Denver, CO
8/14 – Spokane, WA
8/18 – San Jose, CA

Rock on the Range 2015 – post show review

ROTR2015Rock on the Range 2015 – Columbus, OH

Columbus, OH was on fire May 15, 16, 17th. Rockers from all around the world set their temporary homes at Mapfre Stadium to take part in one of the largest festivals in the nation, Rock on the Range. The lineup was huge from Headliners Slipknot, Linkin Park and Judas Priest. Each band took advantage of the shortened set to give an explosive version of their full setlist.  A sold out event which brought in a massive amount of people to witness the shows.

10.11.2013: Something Involving A Monkey, Lydia Can’t Breathe, New Years Day, Stolen Babies & Otep @ Peabody’s

Stolen Babies live group shot

As one of Cleveland’s premiere concert venues winds down its run, Peabody’s has decided to go out with a bang – a solid month of great shows for the Cleveland faithful. Friday’s show was certainly no exception.

The place was packed pretty much as soon as the door opened on this night. A quick conga line later, Something Involving A Monkey was working their magic in the Pirate’s Cove. If you’ve been living under a rock, SIAM is Cleveland’s latest (and arguably greatest) experimental rock outfit. With an eccentric mix of rock, roll and insanity, this a three-man outfit that knows how to get the bang out of their buck. One need look no further than their cover of “Mexican Radio”, which they make all their own with the addition of the kazoo. For fans of bands like Mr. Bungle and Primus, Something Involving A Monkey is something that you NEED to check out – preferably live, as they put on a hell of a show.

A quick move back over to the main stage caught Lydia Can’t Breathe in the middle of their set. At first listen, these guys seemed like a pretty wild power metal outfit – until their next song started. In fact, Lydia Can’t Breathe is all over the metal map and is probably best described as “fun metal”. They rock out along the lines of Between The Buried & Me and they have fun doing it. Irreverent and at times caustic, they mixed up their set with a mix of borderline power ballads, punk, power rock and an inflatable whale – while discussing the merits of a diet of peanut butte & jelly sandwiches. Playing a bit more “straight” than SIAM, LCB is cut from the same sort of cloth nonetheless and is definitely a band to check out if you like your metal a little less depressing and serious than most.

New Years Day was next and started off the “girl power” portion of the evening with some female-fronted rock. They’re clearly gothic, but without the melancholy – they make it fun, like a late night rave in a cemetery. I’ll admit, at first glance, I was set to dismiss them as another Marilyn Manson wannabe band, but with the possible exception of their look, they’ve got nothing to do with that whole scene. They take the gothic look and infuse it with an L.A. sleeze mentality making them one of the better “party bands” I’ve seen in a while because they do it with style instead of the same tired choruses of boozing and partying. They take that high energy and juxtapose it with macabre lyrics and somehow make the two work together.

I’m not going to lie: I’ve seen Something Involving A Monkey a lot of times over the last couple years and I had never heard of Lydia Can’t Breathe – I was there to see Stolen Babies. Stolen Babies are a three-piece that has taken the experimental rock scene by storm. With one of the more accomplished (and underrated) drummers out there, a solid (if sadly overlooked) guitarist and an accordion-playing chantreuse, what’s not to like? Stolen Babies are easy to dismiss as a gimmick band, but doing so would be unfortunate. They take a pretty solid rock foundation and infuse it with influences ranging from punk to prog to dare I say folk music. The results are nothing short of spectacular. They’ve existed off and on in various forms for years but that on-again, off-again lineage has only helped them evolve into what they are now. They have a little something to offer to just about everybody. They can rock as hard as anybody but can tone it down and enchant you just as easily. There aren’t a lot of bands out there today like Stolen Babies – they’re unique – and in today’s music scene, I can’t think of higher praise.

The place was rocking all night long and this was a show where everybody really seemed to like just about every band that played. Then Otep took the stage and it was clear who the people had come to see. Otep has been all over the musical map lately – Hydra and Atavist are a far cry from Ascension, for instance – but somehow is able to streamline the sound and make it all work together. Loud, proud and in-your-face, Otep stormed the stage and tore through a set of mostly the newer material, full of seething rage and power. Little of the gothic-era stuff seems to remain, but somehow there’s that underlying nu-metal current even while hammering away with some of the most brutal beats this side of Sepultura. Otep has said that Hydra will be the last album, but we’ll see – on this night, at least, there didn’t seem to be any signs of letting up.



09.18.2013: Halcyon Way, Soulless, Fozzy, Global Warning and Saxon @ Peabody’s & The Pirate’s Cove

Halcyon Way live

It’s been far too long since I’ve done a show review, so please bear with me while I shake off the rust. And what better way to get back into the flow than with some fist pumping power metal?

First up was Halcyon Way, an up and coming band from Atlanta, crossing the country on their second North American tour. After breaking in with Udo, they went right back out with Saxon, so clearly these guys think they’re ready for the big time. And ready they are! If you were watching video of this show, you’d never guess they were the first opener – they played like headliners and the crowd bought every bit of it. With some ridiculously elaborate musicianship laying the groundwork for rock hard vocals, these guys are solid power metal with some definite prog undercurrents and if you don’t start hearing more about them soon, then there really is no hope for our society. It was my first real exposure to them, but hopefully I’ll be singing along the next time they come through…which will be with Fates Warning, so there’s clearly no “let up” with these guys.

Then it was over to the Pirate’s Cove for Cleveland’s own death metal masters, Soulless. Or black metal. Who knows? Who cares? These guys have been rocking Cleveland for a long damn time. Soulless is damn near the opposite of Halcyon Way, swapping beer and aggression for Halcyon Way’s polish, but they make it work for them and there’s sure no doubting their skill. They’ve thrashed longer and louder than a whole lot of younger bands and still go into every show like they’re still trying to prove themselves. If you like your thrash loud, dark, pissed off…and maybe a little drunk…these guys are for you.

Fozzy, for those who may not know, is the power metal band fronted by Chris Jericho, of WWE fame. It would be dismissive to call it a side project or a vanity project, though – he’s been doing this for over ten years and definitely takes this seriously. It’s easy to call them glam, because Jericho is the ultimate front man, but that’s dismissive as well. He’s assembled a band that can play a strong mix of power metal and straight up party rock, striking that perfect balance between serious musicianship and having fun. He still has the flair, sporting his sequined Elvis jacket for the first part of their set, but make no mistake – he’s here to rock. I’ve got to say, I was pleasantly surprised, as I went in expecting Y2J playing glam rock out of the 80s or something.

Global Warning’s female-fronted brand of power metal was up next in the Cove. Styled after the likes of Judas Priest, Global Warning puts a distinctly feminine touch on the NWOBHM but somehow does it with plenty of balls. They’re sleek and styled and know what they’re doing and dammit, you’re going to like it. They ripped through a sadly abbreviated set because Peabody’s insists on not quite staggering the bands when they have both stages going, so they wound up playing half of their set opposite Fozzy. It’s the nature of the beast, though and if there’s one thing these guys and gals know, it’s how to play like beasts. Definitely worth checking out all on their own.

Saxon. Just saying the name makes one think of massive NWOBHM riffs. With so many of the younger crowd in the house for Jericho and Fozzy, it was good to see that a whole lot of old school metalheads were on hand for Saxon as well. Have Biff and Paul really been doing this for almost 40 years?! If you don’t know Saxon, you just aren’t metal, so I don’t know what I can tell you here. They somehow manage to play like they’re been together for decades while still seemingly enjoying it like it’s their first tour. They set a standard for metal bands to live by and that many fall short of. They’re Saxon!



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